Following the increased number of attacks on and murders taking place in farming and rural communities in KwaZulu-Natal, the KwaZulu-Natal Agricultural Union (Kwanalu) handed over a safety and security memorandum to the South African Police Service (SAPS) in an exclusive webinar for its members.

“We have been at the forefront of calling for stronger action, more manpower and resources and have acted proactively for quite some time concerning the issues which have recently escalated,” said Kwanalu president Phenias Gumede.

The memorandum outlines the commitment of Kwanalu, together with the rural and farming communities of KwaZulu-Natal, to the revised National Rural Safety Strategy (NRSS) within which the rural and farming communities of KwaZulu-Natal and the police are key role-players.

Kwanalu takes a firm stand

“We want to clearly state our position on safety and security in farming and rural areas relating to the NRSS – the foundation upon which our sector stands when it comes to safety and security. We now demand urgent and immediate attention and action on the agreed strategy,” Gumede added.

The NRSS is a partnership approach between farming and rural communities and the SAPS. It primarily entails maintaining joint white or blue light patrols, awareness campaigns, simulation exercises, and regular and frequent visits to farms. In addition, it aims to establish efficient mobilisation and support during rural and farm attacks to apprehend offenders as quickly as possible.

Following the handover of the memorandum, Kwanalu spoke to South Africa’s leading safety and security industry role-players about rural and community safety, public prosecutions, stray cattle on public roads, fuel theft, stock theft and endangered species, hunting with dogs and land invasion issues.

“We want to unify all farmers and rural landowners, their associations, commodity groups and all agri-business stakeholders within our province. One of the ways in which we achieve this is through engaging government and stakeholders, at all levels, to inform and influence meaningful change. We are very pleased with the outcome of the webinar and look forward to working even more closely with the SAPS on the NRSS,” said Kwanalu CEO, Sandy La Marque. – Press release, Kwanalu